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George P Colby Gabriela Navarro

Posted By Gabriela Navarro 1, Tuesday, April 22, 2014


Miami artist Xavier Cortada created the FLOR500 project in 2013.  The important Floridian that I was assigned is George P. Colby, a spiritualist medium from New York.  Although I am not very “spiritual” myself, I did my research on this man, and grew to appreciate his efforts to create a spiritualist camp, “Cascading” which is an Indian word that means “water beneath the rocks”. It was founded in 1875 in Volusia County, Florida.  It is said that this camp has a large number of psychics and mediums, and is often referred to the “Psychic Capital of the World”.

I received a packet containing at least 100 Blanket Flower seeds. They’re also called “Blanket and Gaillardia, that is a Florida Native wildflower.  I decided to plant them in my aunt’s backyard, which is full of beautiful flowers and lemon trees, avocado trees, and many more. I found this location the most appropriate. The flower will bloom into a safe and beautiful environment. In addition, it is also a Coral Gables Landmark home located near the Coral Gables golf course.  I dedicated my Blanket Flower seeds to George P. Colby because he created a spiritualist camp out of nothing. Similar to the flower, it is only a bunch of seeds at first, but with proper care and dedication, it becomes a beautiful flower. He created a place were people can come together for the same purpose, similar to this soon to be flower.  I thought this project was pretty appropriate to this course because it is a form of artistic expression, and we are able to give our 2 cents on something that I personally have never done before and really having fun while doing it. 

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FIU College of Architecture + The Arts

Xavier Cortada
Florida International University
College of Architecture + The Arts
420 Lincoln Road, Suite 430
Miami Beach, FL 33139

Xavier Cortada's participatory art practice is based at Florida International University.


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